Photo GDR-00286

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  Bill Dismuke


  1964 Ford Thunderbolt


  Super Stock


  Bill Dismuke






  Photos by Bill Dismuke





The Thunderbolt is #99 out of 100 built. It was originally purchased by a guy named Pete Mount, a car salesman at Cook Motor Co. Pete successfully raced the car under the name Mighty Quick Jr. for several months. He wasn't  accustomed to the pecularities of the T-bolt (the handling), so he traded the T-bolt body to me. I had a 63 lite weight Galaxie. That body was included in the trade and $1,250.00 cash. By the way, the lite weight was named the Rebel Rouser and was a good running car, itself. I contacted Phil Bonner about building me a motor. Since he had recently started racing Falcons and his Bolt was just sitting in his shop, he sold me the 427 out of his personal Tbolt for $1,200.00. (Approximately equal to $10,000.00 in today's dollars) Needless to say, the car was very successful on the strip. Since the car had been painted purple, I named it the Purple Passion The name was painted in yellow on the rear quarters. My name Bill Dismuke - Donalsonville, Ga. was on the doors. My momma, Gertie B. Dismuke was my only sponser. To complete the picture, I dressed from had to toe in purple (drawers included). 

The Purple Passion raced at:

US 19 Dragway in Albany, Ga
Sunset Dragstrip at Panama City Bch, Fla.
Andalusia Dragway in Andalusia, Ala
Malone Dragway in Malone, Fla
Big A Dragstrip in Abbeville, Ala.
Dothan Dragway in Dothan, Ala.
Tallahassee Dragstrip in Tall., Fla.
Houston Bros. Dragstrip in Fairburn, Ga
That was from the end of1964-1968.

More races were won than lost, but the car seemed to do best at Albany. Maybe, it was because it was a Chevy track. The best times I turned with the car was, the low 11.80's at 123 mph. By the way, that's on 7 inch wide tires, with a 19 yr old driver, that's also in the quarter mile. The car came with an automatic transmission, but it was always raced with a 4 speed. The local lawmen were acquainted with the Purple Passion, too! If we were not racing somewhere on Saturday night, occasionally we would drive it over to the local hangout (The Tastee Freeze).

I sold the car in 1968 and it eventually made its way to a Ford collector in Charlotte, NC named Randy Hinson. Renowned T-bolt and old Ford restorer, Donald Allen from Clarksville, Ga, restored the car for Randy in 1986 and it was put back as original as possible, even equipped with 7" cheater slicks. During the time Randy had it, Revell model car Co. used the T-bolt for a template for its model of the T-bolts! The car was housed in Mooresville, NC at the North Carolina Motor Sports Museum until I purchased it back in Jan of 2001. I have been carrying it to shows and having a ball with it at the shows. I probably am gonna put it back in a museum after this show season. I'm just paronoid something will happen to it.

In closing , let me say they were a great bunch of cars and I don't intend to sell it agan.

Thanks -- Bill Dismuke


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